A delay box is a device used in drag racing to electronically delay the release of a car’s throttle. This gives the driver a better chance to stage the car evenly and launch at an optimal rpm. The amount of delay is adjustable, and is generally set according to track conditions.
Why use a delay box
Delay boxes are legal in most sanctioning bodies, and are commonly used by racers in order to gain an advantage over their competition. Most top-level racers will use one in order to improve their chances of winning.
How does a delay box work
A delay box works by delaying the signal from the car’s throttle pedal to the engine’s electronic control unit (ECU). This effectively makes it impossible for the driver to “floor” the throttle and instantly launch the car. The amount of delay is adjustable, and is typically set according to track conditions.
Types of delay boxes
There are two main types of delay boxes: air-activated and button-activated. Air-activated delay boxes use a small air compressor to delay the signal, while button-activated boxes use a series of buttons that the driver must press in order to activate the throttle.
Benefits of using a delay box
Delay boxes can help drivers launch their cars more evenly and at an optimal rpm. This can lead to quicker ETs and better lap times. Additionally, because they make it impossible for the driver to “floor” the throttle, they can help prevent wheelspin and tire shake.
Drawbacks of using a delay box
Because they introduce an element of timing into the equation, delay boxes can be difficult for novice drivers to master. Additionally, if not used correctly, they can lead to slower ETs and poorer lap times. Finally, because they make it impossible for the driver to “floor” the throttle, they can reduce traction and cause the car to spin out.